To Hear God You Must Take Time To Listen
By Rick Warren
— March 10, 2011
“Other seed fell on shallow soil with underlying rock. This seed began to grow, but soon it withered and died for lack of moisture.” Luke 8:6 (NLT)
"When we live hurried lives, God gets shuffled off into the spare minutes and he is short changed with our time."
If you don’t make time for God, you are not going to hear from God. You have to slow down and be quiet so you can hear him. When you are in a hurry you can’t hear God.
If I fly over a country in a plane, I miss all of the details. If I take the train, I see a little bit more. If I take a car, I’ll see a little bit more. If I walk across the country, I will see a lot of details. The faster you are going in life, the more you miss.
When we live hurried lives, God gets shuffled off into the spare minutes and he is short changed with our time. We say, “Lord, speak to me but do it quickly.” Skimping on our time with God leads to a life that becomes more and more shallow. We don’t go deep because we don’t make time for it. We aren’t spending enough time alone with God, if at all. He needs quality time to change us.
This shallow lifestyle, where we’re always in a hurry, represents the shallow or rocky soil in Jesus’ parable.
Most of Israel has a thin layer of topsoil over a bedrock of limestone. The soil isn’t very deep. Jesus says that when the seed falls on this soil it begins to grow but is soon withered and dies for lack of moisture because its roots can’t go down deep.
Jesus says this shallow soil represents a superficial mind. A person with this mind kind of listens to God’s Word, and maybe gets emotionally moved, but she/he never really does anything about it.
Over the last thirty years, I can’t tell you how many people have come up to me after a church service to tell me how moved they were by my message. And yet, months later they still aren’t showing any life change because they didn’t let the message sink in.
How do you get past this? How do you change from being a shallow person to a deep person who keeps the faith even when a recession or an illness or a job loss or marriage trouble hits?
You need two things:
- A daily quiet time. You need time alone with God to read the Bible, pray and keep a journal of the things you are learning.
- A weekly small group. You need time with other believers who are close to you and can give you a fresh perspective. They can give you the encouragement and accountability you need to go deeper in your relationship with God.
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